Tencent’s WeGame platform has pulled Monster Hunter: World from its store less than a week after the launch of the game on PC. This comes during yet another recent movement by mainland authorities to tighten online content control. (Thanks, SCMP!)
In a statement by WeGame, the company stated that authorities had received “numerous” complaints about the Monster Hunter: World‘s content, which led to the game being pulled from the store. A full refund is being offered by Tencent, and a 30 yuan (around $4 in USD) coupon is going to be distributed to buyers as compensation. Otherwise, players who already own the game can keep playing, but without a guarantee on whether service will continue. Tencent has refused to comment further on the issue.
All of this is coming during a hiatus in approved video games by mainland Chinese authorities that began in March 2018. Most of the second quarter games for Tencent were licensed before this period of suspension, and the Chinese game market is projected to halt its growth in the latter half of 2018, thanks to the hiatus. Other online content providers, such as anime and video content site Bilibili, have been taken offline for content checking in the past months.
Interestingly, Tencent announced back in July 2018 that they are opening a version of WeGame in Hong Kong, which is less restrictive and allows access to the global market.